A club reflecting our region

étang de la Vieille Forge et un de ses pontons à Signy-Le-Petit

The Vieille Forge Pond and one of its fishing pontoons in Signy-Le-Petit, 500 meters from the Igl’houx

The Ardenne Ecotourism Club is, above all, a network of tourism professionals committed to respecting the environment and promoting local products in the French, Belgian, and Luxembourgish territories.

Of course, our pride drives us to highlight our region, with its remarkable assets such as the forest, and here particularly the ponds and characteristic hedgerows of Thiérache. The Igl’houx is notably located in the heart of the Ardennes Regional Natural Park, which is also involved in actions and projects aimed at promoting and supporting the territory sustainably.

The Igl’houx has been a member of the Ardenne Ecotourism Club since 2022, joining a network of over 170 members.

A sustainable commitment

Although this club isn’t comparable to a label, criteria from a quality charter covering the three pillars of sustainable development (economic, social, and environmental) are established to ensure the level of eco-responsibility of the accommodation and to encourage the owner to continue efforts in this direction, with the expert advice of the Ardennes Tourist Development Agency and possible assistance.

The idea is to meet a growing demand from tourists seeking meaning and a return to nature.

Committing to the Ardenne Ecotourism Club also means moving towards responsible tourism through the promotion of short circuits, soft mobility, and responsible management of tourist facilities.

Among these criteria, here are those that Igl’houx positively meets:

  • Promoting the Ardenne brand and its providers, committing to the network’s service, and sharing its information,
  • Communicating its commitment through presence on the Internet via a website or on social media, providing brochures (on-site or on its website) for visitors to learn about various tourist offers and local producers,
  • Managing water responsibly :
    • Non-artificialization of soils (use of chipped wood for the pedestrian path),
    • Implementation of a dry toilet system,
    • Installation of a rainwater harvesting system,
    • Recycling of water from certain uses (rinsing, cooking water, water from carafes, etc.) for outdoor watering,
  • Conserving energy :
    • Monitoring electricity consumption, use of low-energy bulbs (LEDs),
    • Installation of low-consumption electrical equipment (rated A+ or higher for most appliances),
    • Use of a renewable energy heating system (wood, solar, etc.),
    • Application of bioclimatism: The Igl’houx is nestled among trees and benefits from their shade and cooling effect during the summer, as well as wind protection,
    • Roof and wall insulation using a biosourced material (wood),
    • The furniture and decoration are predominantly made of wood (non-agglomerated, non-exotic), plant-based, metal, or from recycled or second-hand objects,
  • Reduce waste :
    • Waste sorting management,
    • Providing jerry cans of drinking water to reduce the use of plastic bottles,
    • Providing refillable toiletry items,
    • Promoting the use of second-hand equipment, especially for furnishing and electronic equipment,
    • Recycling end-of-life equipment and/or functional equipment to a ressourcerie such as Bell’Occas,
    • Enhancing communication through the use of the internet (website, social media, online sales, etc.),
  • Consuming responsibly :
    • For breakfasts, selection of local and seasonal products,
  • Protecting biodiversity :
    • Setting up a garden with various aromatic herbs,
    • Installation of an insect hotel and 2 birdhouses,
    • No use of insecticides or chemical fungicides,
    • Responsible management of hedges (pruning outside of nesting periods),
    • Provision of a pond or vegetated water body,
    • Preservation of dead trees or deadwood on the ground,
    • Partnerships with local organizations (Regional Natural Park of the Ardennes) for the valorization of knowledge about local species and their observation,
    • Composting of bio-waste,
  • Soft mobility :
    • Provision of dedicated bicycle parking spaces,
    • Provision of parking spaces equipped with outlets for electric cars/bicycles,
    • Communicating clear instructions for engaging in activities around my site without a car,
  • Raising awareness and informing your customers :
    • Highlighting local, seasonal, organic agricultural products, as well as regional cuisine,
    • Raising awareness about observing wildlife and flora, biodiversity, and the environment,
  • Local life :
    • I am a partner in at least one event per year related to the residents or associations of the municipality (town hall and events committee of Brognon),
    • The organization supports a local association by offering time, lending equipment, or any form of significant assistance.

The Ardenne brand

The Ardenne brand, among other things, carries the Ardenne Ecotourism club, making its image shine beyond borders and establishing it as a must-visit destination. It provides better visibility through various media tools: websites, brochures, social networks, press, etc.

It is a unique identity specific to the Ardennes, with values conveyed through various projects (tourist activities, events, commerce, etc.).

Foire de Libramont 2019 avec Escargotière de Warnant

Libramont Fair 2019 with Adeline GRULET, creator of the “Guide du Bien Manger” and the Snail Farm of Warnant.

On a more personal note, I have the honor of being an ambassador for the Ardenne brand, particularly through the creation of the Guide du Bien Manger in 2019 and 2021. The purpose of this guide was to highlight the best places for eating and drinking well, showcasing local producers/artisans, markets, stores selling local products, and restaurants featuring regional products.

Although there hasn’t been a publication since, I continue to uphold these values of promoting short circuits through the Relais du Gland (located 50 meters from the Igl’houx), which is open during the warmer months and offers local drinks and appetizer platters.

The values of the Ardenne brand

Carried by the members of the Ardenne brand, these values are also at the heart of every Ardennes resident, proud of their region and its history :

  • Well-being: a land of tranquility, serenity, balance,
    vitality, and freedom.
  • Authenticity: a territory imbued with naturalness, purity,
    focused on nature, ecology, blending simplicity and loyalty.
  • Imagination: a place of dreams and poetry, of romance,
    but also of creativity.
  • Sharing: a land of hospitality, listening, respect, meeting,
    and exchange.